MSRC News Details

MSRC Executive Summary Update

An Update from Peter M. Gutierrez, Ph.D. and Thomas Joiner, Ph.D., Co-Directors

We continue to support 19 investigator-initiated studies and four postdoctoral fellow pilot studies with research infrastructure dollars. All available funds have been committed to these projects. Study teams are making good progress, and all scheduled to conclude their work no later than September 2015. Multiple studies have produced high quality deliverables including peer-reviewed journal articles, conference presentations, and a mobile application. Our second annual MSRC pre-conference training day was held April 9 at the American Association of Suicidology conference. It was attended by 28 trainees from the U.S. and Canada, with preliminary feedback from participants being quite positive. Formal feedback is currently being collected. Work has moved ahead to formalize collaboration with Army STARRS. We are also actively involved with the efforts at the National Institutes of Health to develop common data elements for suicide research. Dr. Gutierrez will be attending their suicide workgroup meeting April 29 as a liaison and Dr. Joiner will review and provide feedback on the recommended set of measures prior to its adoption.

In terms of research program highlights, Dr. Bush’s Virtual Hope Box app has been released for Android and iOS to public marketplaces for free download. They also have created Clinician and User Guides to the VHB for download from T2’s website. Dr. Schmidt’s manuscript Randomized Clinical Trial Evaluating the Efficacy of a Brief Intervention Targeting Anxiety Sensitivity Cognitive Concerns is in-press at the Journal of Clinical and Consulting Psychology. Dr. Cerel has a manuscript under review at JAMA reporting the preliminary findings from her Suicide Bereavement in Military and their Families study – notably, that 47% of the overall population report knowing someone in their lifetime who died by suicide. Of veterans, 25.4% of these report exposure was during their military service and 48% of these were also exposed to a sudden traumatic death during their military service. Dr. Anestis has been hugely successful recruiting participants for his study Identifying Factors Associated with Future Self-Directed Violence Within a Sample of Mississippi National Guard Personnel, with 6-month follow-ups about to commence. Dr. Matarazzo recently leveraged her Home-Based Mental Health Evaluation (HOME) to Assist Suicidal Veterans with the Transition from Inpatient to Outpatient Settings: A Multi-Site Interventional Trial to receive additional funding from VA Central Office to expand the related clinical demonstration project to an additional two VA sites. Dr. Signoracci’s postdoctoral pilot study data collection is concluded and analyses are underway, and Dr. Barnes’ postdoctoral pilot study is concluding scheduled follow-up assessments and will begin data analysis within the next few months.